California leads US states in UFO sightings, research says

Most UFO sightings reported seeing circles, spheres, or triangle shapes in the sky.|

California residents reported more UFO sightings than any other state, according to research analysis conducted by, with Calistoga in Napa County rounding out the top 5 list of hot spots per capita.

The website analyzed data from the National UFO Reporting Center’s State Report Index, in regard to UFO sightings in the U.S. since 2001, and found that California recorded 15,480 officially reported UFO sightings, with an average duration of 13 minutes per sighting.

Calistoga, the quaint Napa Valley town just over Sonoma County’s northeastern county line, came in at No. 5 for most sightings in the state per capita — with 12 encounters reported out of its 5,173-person population, according to the data.

Several Sonoma County cities also are included in the data, including 129 reported sightings in Santa Rosa, 44 sightings in Petaluma, 37 sightings in Sonoma, 35 sightings in Rohnert Park and 25 sightings in Sebastopol.

Elsewhere in the North Bay, Napa recorded 59 sightings, San Rafael recorded 42 sightings, Ukiah recorded 22 sightings and Kelseyville recorded 20 sightings.

Los Angeles was the state’s leading UFO hot spot, with 597 reported sightings, though Joshua Tree topped the state’s list of sightings per capita, with 38 people per 10,000 reporting a UFO. Mount Shasta’s 20 reported sightings lasted on average 51 minutes, the longest in the state.

“This comprehensive new information paints a fascinating picture of the modern UFO mystery, at a time when the subject is making the news all around the world,” said Nick Pope, who investigated UFOs for the British Government, in a statement. “The new data will be of interest to anyone intrigued about UFOs, and might even assist NASA, the Department of Defense, and the U.S. intelligence community, who are all working on UFO studies where identifying possible hotspots could be useful.”

According to, most of these UFO sightings reported seeing circles, spheres or triangular shapes in the sky. In particular, three residents spotted seeing a delta-shaped object flying overhead quickly, too.

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